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Proceedings Paper

Design of the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT)
Author(s): Robert Stobie; Jacobus G. Meiring; David A. H. Buckley
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Paper Abstract

SALT is a 10-m class telescope for optical/infrared astronomy to be sited at Sutherland, the observing state of the South African Astronomical Observatory. This telescope will be based on the principle of the Hobby-Eberly Telescope (HET) at McDonald Observatory, Texas. This cost-effective design is a tilted-Arecibo concept with a segmented spherical primary mirror of diameter 11 meters. The telescope has a fixed gravity vector but with full 360 degrees rotation in azimuth. A spherical aberration corrector mounted on a tracker beam at the prime focus enables a celestial object to be followed for 12 degrees across the sky. The SALT design enables over 70% of the sky to be accessed for about 20% of the cost of a conventional telescope of similar aperture. The telescope will be used primarily for spectroscopic studies of celestial objects with a light-weight low-dispersion imaging spectrograph mounted at the prime focus and other higher-dispersion instruments fiber-fed and mounted in an environmentally controlled basement. The concept design for SALT is presented with emphasis on the design changes between SALT and HET.

Paper Details

Date Published: 20 July 2000
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 4003, Optical Design, Materials, Fabrication, and Maintenance, (20 July 2000); doi: 10.1117/12.391525
Show Author Affiliations
Robert Stobie, South African Astronomical Observatory (South Africa)
Jacobus G. Meiring, Southern African Large Telescope Project (South Africa)
David A. H. Buckley, Southern African Large Telescope Project (South Africa)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4003:
Optical Design, Materials, Fabrication, and Maintenance
Philippe Dierickx, Editor(s)

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